What is the current status of low-GWP refrigerants? The HPT Annex 54 Annual Report for 2019 is published

The Annual Report of HPT Annex 54, Heat pump systems with low GWP refrigerants , is now published on the HPT Website. The report provides a comprehensive, up-to-date review of current research, product development and regulation status of low-GWP refrigerants for the heat pump application. It summarizes the collective efforts by researchers, engineers and regulation committees across the industry.

Some issues presented in the report include a review on progress towards utilizing flammable refrigerants, recent regulations and research advancements in bringing low-GWP refrigerants to residential AC systems, current national and international standards and policies for residential and commercial heat pump systems with low-GWP refrigerants, and the application of low-GWP refrigerants in high temperature heat pumps.

Further, two low-GWP refrigerant candidates for chilling and air conditioning are discussed. Finally, on-going activities in Italy, and a comprehensive review of refrigerant regulations, initiatives and market progress in Japan, are presented.

This report aims at providing a much needed review and update on low-GWP refrigerants for heat pump application, and will be a good reference for researchers, engineers and policy makers across the HVAC industry.

Is cooling the future of heating?

On December 13, IEA published a commentary written by the IEA analysts Thibaut Abergel and Chiara Delmastro. This commentary, starts with pointing out that high-efficiency heat pump technology is the cornerstone of sustainable buildings. Heating and cooling systems, are the two main end-uses in building operations, and since cooling demand is expected to grow considerably, a cold crunch is looming behind the buildings heat decarbonisation challenge.

In the article, it is pointed out that low-carbon heating and cooling in buildings need a common strategy and a third of the global population will require heat pumps for both heating and cooling. The authors recommend to exploit synergies across heating and cooling strategies to lower the cost, since this can accelerate the deployment of more efficient reversible heat pumps, help to phase out fossil fuel equipment and therefore support buildings sector decarbonisation objectives. In particular, heat pump sales for heating need to triple by 2030 and become the leading technology in the long-term. They reach more than 50% of heating equipment stock by 2050 for both residential and commercial applications in the Sustainable Development Scenario.

The report states that a number of heat pump technology designs are already ready for deployment. However, the diversity of building types, end-use service demand patterns and climate conditions require further enhancement for them to adapt to a variety of working environments. Therefore, innovation is a must to further accelerate heat pump deployment.

The authors conclude that governments hold the key to low-carbon heating and cooling – to stimulate deployment they should apply the following measures:

  • Incentives for low-carbon heating technologies
  • Performance-based labels
  • Remove fossil fuel subsidies

Read the full commentary here.

IEA high-lights three HPT TCP annexes in the “Today in the lab – Tomorrow in energy?” Initiative

The IEA initiative “Today in the lab – Tomorrow in energy?” is designed to shine a spotlight on research projects under development in the Technology Collaboration programmes (TCPs). The purpose is to raise awareness of the contribution that TCP technologies and system can make in reaching climate and energy goals.

Annex 55 – Comfort and Climate Box
Manage heating, cooling and power demand while emitting the least possible carbon, at the lowest cost, with the lowest impact on the electricity grid

Annex 47 – Heat Pumps in District Heating and Cooling systems
Opportunities and challenges of implementing heat pumps in district heating and cooling systems

Annex 53 – Advanced Cooling/Refrigeration Technologies Development
Improving the efficiency of air conditioning and refrigeration systems

The IEA Secretariat and the IEA Committee on Energy Research and Technology hope that this initiative will not only win more recognition for the work of the TCPs from a broader audience but also help accelerate innovation and foster market deployment by bringing promising TCP research projects to the attention of decision-makers in government and industry.

New issue of the HPT Magazine is out!

The topic this time is: Digitalization as an enabler for a robust, flexible and
sustainable energy system

Digitalization is an enabler in many areas. And the energy system is, of course, no exception. With digitalization the energy system could become even more robust, flexible and sustainable. This issue of the HPT Magazine focuses on the possibilities of digitalization in relation to heat pumping technologies.

The Foreword points out that the term “digitalization” is commonly used, but not always strictly defined. And that such technologies might indeed improve the performance of more mature technologies, if we understand how to make them cooperate.

In one of the topical articles, digitalization is used for reaching energy costs savings. It describes a project where a control algorithm is developed, predicting solar energy gains. This leads to lowered costs for energy, keeping inhabitants’ comfort intact. The other topical article investigates the so-called controller-in-the-loop approach to testing of heat pumping system controllers. This type of testing is less costly than prototype testing, and closer to real operation than software testing.

In this issue, you can also read about how the market for heat pumps is developing in China, in the Strategic Outlook. One driver is the coal-to-electricity project. The government is supporting the initiative, and the future for heat pumps in China looks good.


Read the HPT Magazine no 2/2020 here.

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Join the upcoming online Workshop about the Comfort and Climate Box for warm and humid climates!

On Thursday, 12th of November, 13:00 – 16:00 CET there will be an online Workshop about the Comfort and Climate Box (CCB) for warm and humid climates.

The purpose with the workshop is to inspire to a new Annex within the HPT TCP. The background is that the cooling demand is growing rapidly. It is important that the system solutions are easy to install, affordable and efficient.

There is very much interest in this area of cooling. IEA has published several reports, and the topic was discussed at the HPT TCP National Experts’ Meeting in 2019. There, at least five experts expressed large interest to develop this idea further. Furthermore, representatives from India have expressed interest in the topic. In addition, this also offers an opportunity to establish collaboration with other TCPs, e.g. the Energy Storage TCP (ECES TCP).

Examples of questions and problems to be discussed to define the project

  • Type of buildings to be addressed? Commercial, residential, combined?
  • How can we provide cooling, dehumidification and hot water?
  • How do we provide sufficient dehumidification capacities?
  • What (grid) services can be provided, and to what extent?

A workshop on this topic was originally scheduled for the IEA HP Conference, which should have been held in May 2020 at Jeju Island, Korea, but which is postponed to April 2021. As we consider the topic of high importance, we want to start the process of developing it further together with the HPT community already during fall 2020.

We want to invite you all to this workshop to develop the idea further together.

Register to the CCB Webinar here.

AHRI refrigerant webinars online

The recent five-part series of refrigerant webinars hosted by the Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) can now be found archived on the AHRI’s website.

The webinar series on the latest refrigerant research attracted more than 1600 participants. Topics included air conditioning applications, commercial refrigeration applications, understanding refrigerant sensors, predictive tools for refrigerant behaviours, and refrigerant ignition in open flames/hot surfaces.

“The refrigerant webinar series was quite effective in engaging various stakeholders about the research taking place to determine application limits and safety requirements for low-GWP flammable refrigerants,” said AHRI vice president of regulatory affairs Helen Walter-Terrinoni, who also heads the AHRI Safe Refrigerant Transition Task Force (SRTTF).

AHRI’s SRTTF was established in 2019 to address every step of the supply chain in the transition to safe low-GWP refrigerants. The Task Force comprises AHRI members and stakeholders employed with contractors, government agencies, the fire service, unions, training organizations, environmental groups, and other entities.

Source: https://www.coolingpost.com/world-news/ahri-refrigerant-webinars-online/

European Commission’s Renovation Wave Strategy released: cut emissions, boost recovery and reduce energy poverty – heat pumps is one of the key solutions

The European Commission recently published its Renovation Wave Strategy to improve the energy performance of buildings. The Commission aims to at least double renovation rates in the next ten years and make sure renovations lead to higher energy and resource efficiency. This will enhance the quality of life for people living in and using the buildings, reduce Europe’s greenhouse gas emissions, foster digitalisation and improve the reuse and recycling of materials. By 2030, 35 million buildings could be renovated and up to 160,000 additional green jobs created in the construction sector.

Buildings are responsible for about 40% of the EU’s energy consumption, and 36% of greenhouse gas emissions from energy. But only 1% of buildings undergo energy efficient renovation every year, so effective action is crucial to making Europe climate-neutral by 2050.

Thus, heating buildings is pointed out as a crucial sector in order to reach energy and climate goals. This is in line with the recent IEA report Energy Technology Perspectives (ETP). More specifically, heat pumps are amply highlighted in the ETP, as a crucial part of the Sustainable Development Scenario (SDS), in order to reach these goals. Sales ratios of heat pumps (as a proportion of total sales of building heating equipment) need to increase drastically in all regions of the world, if the SDS is to be reached.

With nearly 34 million Europeans unable to afford keeping their homes heated, the Renovation Wave Strategy and other public policies to promote energy efficient renovation are also a response to energy poverty, support the health and wellbeing of people and help reduce their energy bills. The Commission has also recently published a Recommendation for Member States on tackling energy poverty.

The strategy will prioritise action in three areas: decarbonisation of heating and cooling; tackling energy poverty and worst-performing buildings; and renovation of public buildings such as schools, hospitals and administrative buildings. The Commission proposes to break down existing barriers throughout the renovation chain – from the conception of a project to its funding and completion – with a set of policy measures, funding tools and technical assistance instruments.

Again drawing a parallel to the ETP, the action areas of the Strategy mentioned above are largely in line with energy-effective uses and specific points of heat pumps as outlined in the ETP, such as space heating, domestic hot water, district heating, and cooling. Thus, heat pumps are crucial for this development.

The federation of European Heating, Ventilation and Air conditioning Associations (REHVA) will focus its Brussels summit 2020, held on November 3-6, to the Renovation wave, tackling key issues in the HVACR sector: how EU policies support good quality energy renovation that delivers guaranteed performances also in terms of improved indoor climate quality. REHVA aims to bring together high-level representatives of EU institution, as well as leading representatives of think thanks and NGOs, from the “practitioners” side.

Source (together with links provided above):


WEBINAR 29th of October– Presentation of white paper from Annex on High-Temperature Heat Pumps (HTHP)

Date: Thursday, 29th of October, 15:00 – 16:15 CET

Industrial processes are currently responsible for 20 % of total greenhouse gas emissions in Europe. In order to stay within the 1.5°C scenario of the Paris Climate Agreement, measures to reduce these greenhouse gas emissions from industry are urgently needed.

In connection to the Annex on High-Temperature Heat Pumps (HTHP), we would like to present a White Paper on High-Temperature Heat Pumps. This paper highlights the role heat pump technologies can fulfil in realizing significant reductions in CO2 emissions arising from industrial process heating.

The White Paper aims at bringing HTHPs on the European Agenda and to make sure that it is considered in energy system planning and the creation of regulatory frameworks. Moreover, the White Paper outlines a clear demand for a dedicated, international RD&D effort and suggests the establishment of an RD&D program to strengthen industrial heat pump applications.


Read more and register.

Celsius Talk 20 October, 2020: Bridging the funding gap

“We don’t lack money, but we lack good projects to lend money to.”

– a banker during an interview on financing urban excess heat recovery investments.

Welcome to this cost free Celsius talk on October 20, 10.00-11:30 under the theme: Bridging the funding gap.

Many cities across Europe aim for sustainability and a reduced climate impact. Many times, these ambitions are halted due to deprioritization, knowledge gaps or, perhaps most commonly, a lack of funds. But, there are many European funding and support mechanisms that can help cities achieve their ambitions, particularly now with the launch of the Green Deal. The problem is that they’re not being used in full – there is a gap between the resources available and the organisations they are meant for. The upside is that this means there are still funds and support available. During this webinar we will try to reduce the gap between resources and cities by explaining some of the resources available and encourage you, the cities, to apply for them. We will show you where, how, and when to apply and give examples of viable projects for these types of support.

Register here.

Virtual event 20-22 October 2020: ATMOsphere America 2020

Due to the recent global developments in the COVID-19 health crisis, ATMOsphere America 2020 will take place in a digital format October 20th through the 22nd!

For first time, ATMO America will cover opportunities for natural refrigerant-based technologies in Central and South America by discussing:

  • international and national-level policy developments
  • market trends
  • showcasing cutting-edge projects
  • manufacturer plans
  • end user experiences

Read more on the conference site.

Virtual event 13-15 October 2020:Chillventa eSpecial

Be there when experts from the international refrigeration, AC & ventilation and heat pump community meet online! From 13-15 October 2020 experts from research and practice will share their knowledge in numerous lectures as part of Chillventa CONGRESS and the official supporting programme.

On 13 October 2020, Chillventa CONGRESS offers excellent specialist knowledge for refrigeration, air conditioning, ventilation and heat pump experts from all over the world.


Read more on the conference site.

Novel multi-salt sorption system, with excellent performance, for refrigerated trucks

The refrigerated trucks in the market are mainly equipped with vapor compression systems powered by the diesel engine. Sorption cooling systems for vehicles can reduce the fuel consumption by using exhaust heat recovery. However, under extreme conditions, such as low exhaust gas temperature and high ambient temperature, the conventional single-salt sorbents are not able to complete the sorption-desorption cycles. Owing to the hysteresis phenomenon of the multi-salt sorbent, the desorption temperature can be reduced and the sorption temperature can be increased. Thus, the multi-salt sorbent has better adaptability for low exhaust gas temperature and high ambient temperature, and it will generate cooling power more efficiently when the exhaust gas temperature changes with the engine load.

Recently, Gao, J., et al. from Shanghai Jiao Tong University, proposed a freezing system with novel compact composite multi-salt sorbent of CaCl2 /MnCl2 for refrigerated trucks.

In this system, the modularized sorption bed was designed for the direct heat exchange with the engine exhaust gas and the ambient air intermittently. The characteristics of the freezing system under different working conditions were analyzed. The results showed that for the optimum cycle, the maximum refrigeration capacity in 65 min was higher than 2.4 kW at the heating temperature of 200 °C and an ambient temperature of about 25 °C. The average Specific Cooling Power (SCP) is increased by nearly 100% compared with the existing two-stage sorption freezing system for refrigerated truck. This indicates that the multi-salt sorbent can meet the demands of light refrigerated trucks.

ACCC NEWSLETTER (2020.09; ACCC = Asian Conference on Cold Chain)
Reference: Gao, J., et al.: Performance investigation of a freezing system with novel multi-salt sorbent for refrigerated truck. International Journal of Refrigeration 98, 129-138 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijrefrig.2018.10.024

The European Green Deal growth strategy launched

Some weeks ago, the European Green Deal growth strategy was launched by the European Commission. The European Green Deal is Europe’s plan to make the EU’s economy sustainable.

It provides an action plan to boost the efficient use of resources by moving to a clean, circular economy, restore biodiversity and cut pollution. Europe can do this by turning climate and environmental challenges into opportunities, and making the transition just and inclusive for all.

The plan outlines investments needed and financing tools available. According to the plan,
– there are no net emissions of greenhouse gases by 2050;
– economic growth is decoupled from resource use;
– no person and no place is left behind.

Connected to this plan, the European Green Deal Call was launched. It encompasses a €1 billion call for research and innovation projects in line with the strategy.

Several parts of this call are of specific interest for research and innovation with the heat area of heat pumping technologies. These are delineated below.

Area 2, Clean, affordable and secure energy

a) LC-GD-2-1-2020, regarding development of renewable energy technologies and their integration into the energy system.
“For DHC systems, the integration of sources of otherwise wasted excess heat or cold as well as the interfacing with existing heating or cooling distribution networks can be considered.”

b) LC-GD-2-3-2020, regarding partnership with Africa.
“Scope: Actions should demonstrate innovative sustainable energy solutions that consider climate adaptation and mitigation potential compared to other technologies/solutions in the African social, economic and environmental contexts. The solutions may address:

  • development of renewable energy sources, including solutions for off-grid communities, and their integration into the existing energy system, considering the generation of renewable energy, the transmission, and the use of storage/battery systems.
  • energy efficiency”

Area 3, Industry for a clean and circular economy:

LC-GD-3-2-2020, Demonstration of systemic solutions for … the circular economy.
“Proposals funded under this topic will form part of the demonstration projects for the implementation of the European Commission’s Circular Cities and Regions Initiative (CCRI) and must be carried out in close cooperation and coordination with it.

Area 4: Energy and resource efficient buildings:

LC-GD-4-1-2020, Building and renovating in an energy and resource efficient way.
“Sustainable, innovative zero-emission and more cost and energy efficient, renewable energy generation in the buildings combined with urban service facilities (e.g. charging facilities) and heating-ventilation-air conditioning (HVAC) solutions :

  • Renewable power generation and H&C systems (e.g. highly performant Photovoltaic solutions adapted to the conditions of use; BAPV where BIPV is not an option; micro-CHP);
  • HVAC solutions (e.g. reversible heat pumps with refrigerants that are not greenhouse gases, or less developed clean heating options such as hydrogen). ”

The deadline for project proposals for all the areas listed above is January 26, 2021.

https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/IP_20_1669   (includes a link to the call text)

Update on Global Cooling Prize: Eight finalists’ field and lab testing about to start

The Global Cooling Prize is an innovation competition to develop a climate-friendly residential cooling solution that can provide access to cooling to people around the world without warming the planet. Stated another way, by harnessing the power of innovation, we can provide cooling solutions that enhance people’s lives without contributing to runaway climate change.

How? This groundbreaking competition is designed to incentivize development of a residential cooling solution that will have at least five times (5X) less climate impact than standard Residential/ Room Air Conditioners (RAC) units in the market today. This technology could prevent up to 100 gigatons (GT) of CO2-equivalent emissions by 2050, and put the world on a pathway to mitigate up to 0.5 ˚C of global warming by 2100, all while enhancing living standards for people in developing countries around the globe.

In November 2019, the eight finalists were announced. To learn more about the Finalist teams and their technologies, see here (scroll down to “Meet the finalists”). From the HPT Annex 53 point of view, especially of interest is that among the finalists is one contribution from Gree Electric Appliances Inc. of Zhuhai and Tsinghua University . Tsinghua University is a participant in Annex 53.

As reported in the September Newsletter, the eight finalists’ field and lab testing are about to start.

“It gives me immense satisfaction to say that we have received some absolutely revolutionary cooling ideas,’’ said Sir Richard Branson, Founder and CEO of the Virgin Group and global Ambassador for the Prize. “What makes this competition especially exciting, is the market transformation opportunity. It could be one of the biggest technology-based steps we can take to arrest climate change.”

The Global Cooling Prize was launched in November 2018 with the aim of spurring the development of a radically more efficient, climate-friendly residential cooling solution. It was launched by a global coalition led by the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India; Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) — a leading global research institute; and Mission Innovation — a global initiative of 24 countries and the European Union to accelerate global clean energy innovation —The initiative is also supported by Conservation X Labs, Alliance for an Energy Efficient Economy (AEEE), and CEPT University, and a coalition of over 20 leading international non-profit organizations who have congratulated the Finalist teams through a special video .

The winner of the Global Cooling Prize will be announced in November of 2020 and awarded more than US$1 million in prize money.


Source (in addition to the links provided in the text):